Stimulus Funds For LED Lighting Research

On January 12, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced that more than $37 million in funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) to support high efficiency, solid-state lighting projects. Solid-state lighting, which uses light-emitting diodes (LEDs) and organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) instead of incandescent bulbs, has the potential to be 10 times more energy efficient than traditional incandescent lighting. Lighting accounts for approximately 24% of the total electricity generated in the U.S. today; by 2030, the development and widespread deployment of cost effective solid-state lighting could reduce electricity use for lighting by one-third nationally.

The 17 projects selected include funding for solid-state lighting core research, product development, and domestic manufacturing. This is the first time that DOE has funded solid-state lighting manufacturing projects. This expanded focus is part of a new DOE initiative to accelerate the adoption of SSL technology through manufacturing improvements that reduce costs and improve quality.

The projects address the full spectrum of research, development, and deployment for solid-state lighting (SSL) technologies. The awards will be leveraged with nearly $28.5 million in private industry cost share, for a total project value of more than $66 million. Projects have been selected in the following three areas:

Core Technology Research ($4 million): Three projects will focus on advancing the technical knowledge base of solid-state lighting for general lighting purposes. The projects will target improved efficiency and performance with reduced costs, which are all critical to the widespread deployment of solid-state lighting.

  • Cambrios (Sunnyvale, CA)
  • University of Rochester (Rochester, NY)
  • WhiteOptics, LLC (Newark, DE)

Product Development ($10.3 million): Six projects will support the development and improvement of commercially viable solid-state lighting source, component, or integrated lighting products. This activity will promote the market introduction of viable SSL products.

  • Cree, Inc. (Durham, NC)
  • General Electric (Niskayuna, NY)
  • Lightscape Materials, Inc. (Princeton, NJ)
  • Osram Sylvania Products, Inc. (Beverly, MA)
  • Philips Lumileds Lighting Company, LLC (San Jose, CA)
  • PPG Industries (Cheswick, PA)

SSL Manufacturing ($23.5 million): Eight projects will focus on achieving significant cost reductions and enhanced quality by improving manufacturing equipment, processes, or monitoring techniques. These projects will address the technical challenges that must be overcome before prices fall to a level where solid-state lighting will be competitive with existing lighting on a first-cost basis.

  • Applied Materials, Inc. (Santa Clara, CA)
  • GE Global Research (Niskayuna, NY)
  • GE Lumination (Valley View, OH)
  • KLA Tencor Corporation (Milpitas, CA)
  • Philips Lumileds Lighting Company, LLC (San Jose, CA)
  • Ultratech, Inc. (San Jose, CA)
  • Universal Display Corporation (Ewing, NJ)
  • Veeco Instruments (Somerset, NJ)

The projects announced last week are award selections. The final details of the award contracts will be finalized in negotiations between DOE and each grantee. To learn more about industrial energy efficiency efforts at the DOE, visit its Solid-State Lighting Program Web site.